Sports Columns

Green Bay Packers staring at lean times

The less said the better about a 4-10 picking record last week. So onto today’s real topic — the Green Bay Packers. I was looking at several things to comment on, including a time when it might’ve been good to go for a two-point conversion in the third quarter, or the New England-New ...

Summing up US soccer failure: ‘Heartbreak’

Editor’s note: Ryan Spitza is a part-time sports writer at The Mining Journal, graduate of Marquette Senior High School and student at Northern Michigan University. ------------------ U.S. soccer, you failed. You failed yourselves, your fans and an entire nation. I’m absolutely ...

Let’s all take a breath

One of the best things about college football rivalries is the reactions of the opposing fan bases after a game is over. Last weekend, on Oct. 7, didn’t disappoint as Michigan and Michigan State fans took things to the extreme after the Spartans upset the Wolverines in Ann Arbor. On the ...

It’s easy to be humble

I’m sure making it simple to find fodder to write for this column. That’s because I find it so much easier to make fun of myself than to try and crow when I’m doing well making these picks. After that 15-1 record in Week 2 (and 26-5 record through the first two weeks), I tanked ...

It’s time to fold the Cards

Back in June, the University of Louisville men’s basketball team had its wings clipped. Now, it’s time to take the next step and put it down altogether. Just a few months ago, the NCAA issued sanctions on the Cardinals after the team’s former director of operations paid for strip ...

Stuck in a land of mediocrity

Bizz. Bizz. Bizz. Bizzz. Bizzzzzzzzzz. That’s me pressing the reset button on this NFL season, but my heavy-handed approach with that device would have you thinking I’m really pressing the panic button. That’s because I am. After 11-4 and 15-1 weeks, I’ve sunk to 8-8 and 7-9 the ...

Where the Wolverines are

In two weeks, the University of Michigan Wolverines will face their in-state rival, the Michigan State Spartans, and at least on paper, this should be another victory for the Maize and Blue. However, Michigan has some flaws going into that game, just like the fierce Wild Things in the ...

Reality comes crashing down for the Armchair Quarterback

I mentioned in this column a couple weeks ago that I gave up playing fantasy football years ago. I should’ve realized that all the easy success I had picking games the first two weeks of this season was my current-day version of the fantasy game. Last weekend I got a dose of reality. My ...

Fellas, it’s time to get over it

Over the last few weeks, whenever I see certain types of sports stories online, these are the typical comments I tend to find attached to them. “Get that chick off the air.” “I don’t need to hear this.” “It’s like my girlfriend is watching with me.” “My ears are ...

Stafford deserved to get paid

Detroit Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford deserved to get paid this season. When I mean “paid,” I mean every bit of the contract extension that he received a few weeks ago to make him the NFL’s highest-paid player in league history. That was $135 million over five years. He showed ...

Just trying to remain humble

Oh, I so want to crow right now after an 11-4 start in my Week 1 picks. But if I do that, there’s not enough wood in the Upper Peninsula for me to knock on to keep from jinxing this week’s picks. So I’ll just say I got lucky, which is true, really, for every good AND bad week making ...

Packers look to come up short again

Dear Packers fans: It may be obvious to you at this point, but in case it hasn’t sunk in yet, here is my message to you. I think your favorite team is wasting Aaron Rodgers’ career. During Rodgers’ tenure as starting quarterback, your amazingly accurate field general has led the ...

Hard to pick teams who will win at start of NFL season

This is my most dreaded prognostication time of the NFL season — Week 1. Not being a student of the game and not studying every personnel move of every team to see if they’ve improved or gotten worse, I end up picking based on last year’s assumptions. It’s also one reason I gave up ...

NFL not quite ready for big turnover

Mother Nature always seems to have a way of reminding us Yoopers what time of the year is upon us. Temperatures a few nights ago in the low 40s in Marquette and I hear in the 30s all over inland areas certainly got my attention when I walked to work the other morning. It’s football ...

How many chances in sports?

Forgiveness is an important part of life. We’re taught when we’re little that if someone does something wrong, we should pardon them and move on from what occurred. This is a common thing in sports and in most cases these days, we’re not only asked to forgive certain things, but ...

Role models are up for debate

Are athletes supposed to be role models? This is a debate that comes up every now and then, but it never gets settled. Some believe very strongly about this, almost demanding that athletes just quietly go about their business and play the game. Others are more lenient about it and would ...

Little League needs to learn something

Playing Little League is a learning experience. Whether they play baseball or softball, kids learn the fundamentals of the game along with the importance of hard work, teamwork and sportsmanship. The Atlee, Virginia, Junior League softball team got a harsh lesson about that last part of it ...

Time to give Bartman some space

After almost 14 years of being a scapegoat, Chicago Cubs fan Steve Bartman might finally have some peace. Earlier this week, the Cubs reached out to Bartman, who has tried to stay out of the public eye, and gave him a 2016 World Series Championship ring. It was a good public relations ...

Is boxing important anymore?

Boxing has officially face-planted in the ring. It has managed to both “jump the shark” and “nuke the fridge” at the same time. It has reached pure absurdity and considering its long history as a sport, that’s saying something. In about a month, one of the best and most ...

Stop with blaming the millennials

Millennials have become America’s punching bag. Whenever something bad happens or goes away, my generation is always somehow to blame. So far, we’ve been accused of destroying the wine industry, the diamond industry, napkin companies, breakfast cereals, bars of soap, gymnasiums, grocery ...